Pisolithus tinctorius

I can't imagine anyone trying to eat this thing, nor would I dare try it myself. Such an amazing growth to look at, I felt compelled to include it in this fungus gallery. Apparently it has a place in the Chinese medical pharmacopea, but I don't know what for. Pisolithus tinctorius resembles a puffball in some ways, but it's laden with a sticky purple-black tar. On the outside you might mistake the youngest specimens with Calvatia gigantea, but if you cut it open you will find it filled with little granules, each holding spores, glued together in a sticky dark mass - nothing like the pure white tofu consistency of the giant puffball. P. tinctorius (dead man's foot) seems to favor disturbed places, paved areas and roadsides, fruiting early in the rainy season.